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Meet Marie Caroline Shulman of Preppy Trendy

Today we’d like to introduce you to Marie Caroline Shulman.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
In 2013 after I quit my job that was becoming more and more mentally unhealthy, I faced the dilemma of either finding a new job or building my own business. I founded Preppy Trendy with 300 dollars and a dream. I had absolutely no idea of what I was doing. That same year, I gave up and went and found myself a new job; the bills weren’t going to pay themselves and PT was put on a hiatus for about a year. Advice: never quit a job without a plan!

During that year break, I learned how to bring PT back in theory while I was still working. I was clear on not being cut to work for anyone who wasn’t me. If you don’t believe in a cause, a dream or a system, it is hard to associate, understand and give your best to that body of work. Today, Covid-19 forced us to temporarily close our store at the Canal Street Market. We are slowly pivoting to an online-only store and the transition should be complete by the end of the year. We might reopen our store but it won’t be until at least December 2020.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
It’s been a roller coaster. It’s not easy turning $300 into a six figure company in under three years. I founded PT in 2013; however, it only became my full-time occupation in 2017.

Preppy Trendy – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Preppy Trendy is a sustainable concept boutique based in New York City that champions slow fashion. We create hip and stylish clothing pieces that are made with salvaged fabrics and garments that aren’t donated or reused.

There has been an astronomic demand for more black-owned sustainable fashion brands and because of that, I started Preppy Trendy in 2013. We believe that because we are ahead of the curve and because we are a company that has sustainable and ethical practices, we are positioned to deliver to our consumers what they are looking for: Guilt-free fashionable trendy chic clothing while building a community of like-minded individuals that believe in our ethos. As we like to say, Preppy Trendy is beyond fashion.

What is “success” or “successful” for you?
Success for me is when I, as an individual, is in a position to help others rise without having to sacrifice my own comfort. It’s better to teach someone else to fish than to give them a fish. You can’t pour from an empty cup.

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